"This 534-page doorstopper is no ordinary kids' book, for sure. With its nods to the graphic novel, the flip book and the storyboard, it is an ambitious tribute to early cinema that some have already dubbed a masterpiece and a work of genius," writes Elizabeth Ward
in the Washington Post
, noting, too, that there are rumors claiming that Martin Scorsese
is interested in adapting Brian Selznick's novel. "It's such a likeably earnest book that one wishes it were so. But the truth is that The Invention of Hugo Cabret
is more about the razzle-dazzle of novelty than any particular artistic merit. The first movies transfixed people too, but that doesn't mean their plots weren't mostly pretty hokey and their characters stiffer than a girder. Just so, in Hugo Cabret
, the method of telling outshines the tale."
's seventh novel, You Don't Love Me Yet
, is a parable of sorts about the ways in which art is created and commodified by a process of borrowing, stealing and transformation," writes Amy Benfer
, introducing her interview with the author for Salon
. And of course, she asks him why he's offering
the rights to the book "free to the filmmaker who presents him with the best proposal by May 15. In return, the filmmaker will agree to pay Lethem 2 percent of the film's budget when the film receives a distribution deal, and allow the rights to the novel to return to the public domain - for the free use of anyone, including other filmmakers - within five years of the film's release."
"As a sensory experience, it's overwhelming," proclaims Mark Kermode
in the Observer
. "But perhaps more importantly, Sunshine
also harks back to a time when sci-fi turned its attention not toward the hallowed teen market but toward the heavens.... [I]t falls within a grand tradition of adult-orientated science-fiction which is haunted by the question of divinity, whether as a presence or an absence."
"[T]oday Killer of Sheep
is widely acknowledged as one of the most insightful and authentic dramas about African-American life on film, as well as one of the earliest examples of the politically aware black independent cinema that was taking shape in the 1970s." Dave Kehr
checks in on its restoration and learns why it's taken six years to secure music clearances alone.
Also in the New York Times
"[Joseph] Gordon-Levitt is something of a gastropodionado," writes Franz Lidz, pointing to the actor's site, HitRecord.org. Related: Nick Schager at Slant on The Lookout.
Sylviane Gold profiles Susanne Bier.
There sure are a lot of movies playing in New York City, notes Seth Kugel.
"No one can state with absolute certitude whether or not RFK took advantage of [Marilyn Monroe's] fascination with the Kennedys and then embarked on a short love affair with her," concedes Mel Ayton. "What can be stated confidently is that no credible evidence exists which can tie the Kennedys (nor, for that matter, the Mafia) into a murder plot." His case for the defense in a 2005 piece for Crime Magazine is far more thoroughly argued that any of the pieces I pointed to last week.
"Several factors have brought about an increase in the professionalism of Israeli filmmakers and a subsequent rise in the quality of Israeli-made films. First, let's look back at the history of the Israeli film industry." Hannah Brown for Israel21c.
"Beyond a doubt, it is the most eccentric movie you will see this year. Less expectedly, it's also one of the most enthralling." The Telegraph's Sheila Johnston talks with Rolf de Heer about Ten Canoes. Via They Shoot Pictures, Don't They?.
"You get the impression speaking to [Thelma] Schoonmaker, a bubbly, warm, vibrant woman, that perhaps she's just adept at dealing with difficult men," notes Cathy Pryor in her long profile for the Independent.
"It's hilarious and unsettling: The joke, which deftly avoids gay baiting, is on straight men." Gina Piccalo riffs on Blades of Glory and its contemporary "context. Sexual identity is more of a public and political issue than it's ever been."
Also in the Los Angeles Times:
Suzanne Rico: "[Ann] Reiner, 31, is trying to create a program through which the Sudanese can document their lives on videotape, telling their own stories, in their own words, to the people who could benefit most from them - other Sudanese. The project will put cameras in the hands of those who have experienced the genocides, the HIV epidemic or gender-based violence first-hand. Reiner believes the minidocumentaries they create will be invaluable teaching tools."
Paul Cullum talks with The Hoax screenwriter William Wheeler: "No stranger to unseen forces, his first produced script was the criminally under-seen The Prime Gig, a con-man movie that pits Ed Harris against Vince Vaughn in his most calibrated performance and suffered from a surfeit of Mamet comparisons."
Howard Ho on the making of Journey From the Fall.
Susan King: "The five-disc set Early Bergman, set for release Tuesday, is the first offering from Eclipse, a new DVD line of the Criterion Collection, the digital arm of the foreign and art house distribution company Janus Films. Janus first brought Bergman to our shores in the latter part of the 1950s." Also: "Two silent rarities, The Curse of Quon Gwon and Her Wild Oat, are on the bill Thursday in Lost and Found, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' periodic series showcasing recently discovered archival prints or films that have been recently restored from new materials."
"This is Hollywood, and one never knows what memorabilia may show up at Saturday garage sales." Deborah Schoch finds Joseph Schildkraut's Oscar. He won it for his supporting role in 1937's The Life of Emile Zola.
Dennis McLellan: "Herman Stein, a staff composer at Universal in the 1950s whose best-known credits include horror and science fiction classics such as Creature From the Black Lagoon and The Incredible Shrinking Man, has died. He was 91." Joe Leydon comments.
Chuck Tryon on The Prisoner, or: How I Planned to Kill Tony Blair: "Because the war in Iraq has now lasted well over four years, I'm not terribly confident that it will receive nearly the audience or attention that Gunner Palace did, but I think it deserves a wider audience, if only because it's telling a somewhat more difficult story about the war and its effects on Iraqi civilians."
Highlighting his own picks, Blake offers a "Quick Guide to AFI Dallas" at Cinema Strikes Back. And at Twitch, Peter Martin interviews Midlothia director Bill Sebastian, reviews the film - and Berkeley as well.
Jürgen Fauth and Marcy Dermansky's DVD roundup comes with extras of its own. Look for "More."
Online listening tip #1. Egg City Radio: "Spotlight on John Carpenter." Via filmtagebuch.
Online listening tip #2. The Ruling Class at CineFile Video.
Online viewing tip #1. Frank Darabont sets off an earthquake on the set of The Mist and you can watch him at AICN. Via Jennifer DeFilippo at Cinematical.
Online viewing tip #2. Eugene Hernandez's SXSW Music in just 26 seconds.
Online viewing tip #3. At the DVblog: Seventeen Evergeen's "Haven't Been Yourself (Lucky Number Music)," directed by Encyclopedia Pictura. Wow.
Online viewing tips. "Famous Balloon Movies" at Cartoon Brew. Wow times 6.
Posted by dwhudson at March 25, 2007 1:51 PM